Friday, April 27, 2012

Beginning ~ with a funny thought

Dinner at the Homesick Restaurant ~ by Anne Tyler, 1982, fiction
While Pearl Tull was dying, a funny thought occurred to her.  It twitched her lips and rustled her breath, and she felt her son lean forward from where he kept watch by her bed.  "Get..." she told him.  "You should have got..."

You should have got an extra mother, was what she meant to say, the way we started extra children after the first child fell so ill.
This opening made me want to keep reading about the Tull family:
Beck, the father who deserts them
Pearl, the mother who does the best she can
Cody, who is mean to his brother
Ezra, who relates to people by feeding them
Jenny, whose mother thinks she's a tramp
I've read about a third of the novel, and each chapter (so far) has been from the viewpoint of a different character:  first Pearl, then Cody, then Jenny, and now Ezra.  Here's a synopsis of the book.
Pearl Tull is nearing the end of her life but not of her memory.  It was a Sunday night in 1944 when her husband left the little row house on Baltimore’s Calvert Street, abandoning Pearl to raise their three children alone:  Jenny, high-spirited and determined, nurturing to strangers but distant to those she loves; the older son, Cody, a wild and incorrigible youth possessed by the lure of power and money; and sweet, clumsy Ezra, Pearl’s favorite, who never stops yearning for the perfect family that could never be his own.  Now Pearl and her three grown children have gathered together again – with anger, hope, and a beautiful, harsh, and dazzling story to tell.


Gilion at Rose City Reader hosts Book Beginnings on Fridays.
Click here for today's Mister Linky.

5 comments:

JC Jones said...

Interesting sounding book. Here is my post:

Book Beginnings

Rose City Reader said...

I liked that book a lot. It wasn't my favorite AT book, but it is right up there.

Thanks for including your post on Book Beginnings.

Mary (Bookfan) said...

Tyler's characters are so interesting. I've read a couple of her novels but not this. Adding it to the list.

Helen's Book Blog said...

I've only read one Anne Tyler book, but really enjoyed it. Have a great weekend

stacybuckeye said...

I'm a Tyler fan and have this one waiting on my shelves. Hope you like it!